While a Top 30 gives a good idea of the best of a farm system, it doesn’t include those outside of the Top 30 or who have already lost their prospect eligibility. With these organizational depth rankings, I hope to cover both of those categories. Without any more digressing, here is my ranking of the catchers in the Phillies organization.
- Jorge Alfaro
- Andrew Knapp
- Deivi Grullon
- Cameron Rupp
- Carlos Ruiz
- Gabriel Lino
- Logan Moore
- Austin Bossart
- Edgar Cabral
- Chace Numata
The top three on my list (Alfaro, Knapp, and Grullon) all made my Top 30 at five, nine, and eighteen, respectively. Alfaro has the higher upside between him and Knapp, but Knapp is far closer to reaching the majors and should start the season in Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Grullon has a high floor with strong defense, but his hit tool has to ramp up if he wants to have a solid shot in the pros.
Rupp and Ruiz are the major-league options at the position, with Rupp being the better of the two if for nothing else than that Ruiz is most likely in his last season. Rupp is a defensive stalwart with a strong arm but will most likely be relegated to the bottom of the lineup until Alfaro and/or Knapp overtake him for the starting role. Ruiz is one of the few veterans left on the team after the upheaval of the team in the last calendar year. He doesn’t have much left in the tank, and as I mentioned before, 2016 will most likely be his farewell tour.
Lino and Moore are both solid defensive options, but like Grullon, have a paltry hit tool. Lino has the higher defensive floor, which leads me to slot him above Moore, but besides that there isn’t a whole lot different between them. Both ended 2015 in Lehigh Valley, but their playing time could be severely cut as Knapp and Alfaro take precedence for playing time.
Bossart and Cabral were 2015 draft picks (14th and 11th rounds, respectively). While Cabral was the higher draft pick, Bossart had a far better season at the plate and played 2015 in the Appalachian League with Williamsport while Cabral was in the Gulf Coast League. Both could end up as major-league backups, but they are years away from that.
Numata has been in the organization since 2010 when he was drafted out of high school. However, he has developed quite slowly in part due to injuries. Numata can struggle as a receiver, but he hits for contact and has a strong arm. He reached High-A Clearwater in 2015, but it’s up in the air how much more he can progress.
Overall, catcher is a fairly deep position in the system, with two upper-tier prospects in Alfaro and Knapp leading the way with plenty of guys behind them with solid defensive floors. The main gripe against the Phillies’ catching depth is the lack of players who can also hit after Alfaro and Knapp.